Quiver Full of Bull

Salt Lake Tribune – Full quivers don’t pay

The opinion by David M. Pearson (Forum, June 9, “Subsidizing children”) is the most illogical and self-serving analysis I’ve seen in a long time.

He wrote that he is helping to subsidize people with few or no children. Since he has nine arrows in his quiver, he gets enormous tax deductions for his progeny. This means he pays little, if any, taxes compared to a single person, or those with few or no children. How he can figure that he is “subsidizing” anyone is a real fantasy.
As a consumer of governmental services, he is not subsidizing anyone, but consuming far more than he contributes. His children will not contribute to my Social Security, they will consume their own Social Security payments. Also, if his quiver of nine bundles of joy also have nine arrows in their quivers, they too will be consumers of governmental services and not pay taxes either.

I hope that the Pearsons do not try to continue “helping” subsidize anyone. They should find another hobby. Their current one is not helping. If their way of doing things were correct, India, China, Africa and South America would be the most prosperous and least crowded countries on Earth.

 Bill Revene

Salt Lake City

It’s always been my understanding that a larger percentage of our household tax dollars go to subsidize public education, compared to families with large numbers of children (thus, more tax deductions). I’m happy to pay taxes for education, because an educated populace is a free and independent populace, and an informed electorate.

At least, that’s the theory.  A few years back when I was much more radical about these things, I used to grouse a lot more loudly about small vs. large footprints, overpopulation, and the fact that poor people without children often had less access to health care and benefits, because poor people with children qualified for many programs not open to single or married couples without children. I had mostly forgotten how outraged I used to be at the thought, and then I watched “Rain in a Dry Land” last night, about two Somali families who were relocated to the U.S.

At one point, the parents of a very large, poor family (9 children – it’s a miracle they all survived the civil wars) were offered a choice: the mother, whose youngest child recently turned two, either had to get a job or go to school. There was no money for child care, and the oldest daughters were doing too well in high school to curtail their education, which was something. “Or….” the social worker offered “if she were to become pregnant, then there would be a medical condition exemption, and also one for having an infant or young toddler…”

The Somali translator took this in, turned to the parents, and said “Have you considered having more children?” Their faces lit up.  Of course, the perfect solution, and the mother looked relieved, hopeful, and apprehensive all at once. If Allah willed it, she would welcome another child, or not, whatever happened.

Less than a year later when the documentarians returned, there was a new baby American in the household. I couldn’t decide if I was moved, or annoyed. I was mostly happy for the family, because the father had found work that was relatively fulfulling (landscape and carpentry work) and everyone else seemed on an upward curve except perhaps for one of the older sons, whose grades weren’t good enough to get him a soccer scholarship to college.

In the other family, at least one of the daughters was likely to wind up pregnant and unmarried not long after the end of the film, but her mother was trying to head that off. Good luck to her. By the way – the Somali people, or at least the Bantu as represented by the families in the documentary are incredibly beautiful, with gorgeous cheekbones and smiles.
Getting back to the letter to the editor:  that’s tellin’ ’em, Bill! But I doubt anyone will see it from your point of view. I do, but then I don’t live in Utah anymore for a very good reason – the smug complacency of the religous quiver-fillers.

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